The Importance of Pseudosciences

Discussion in 'Pseudoscience' started by Asexperia, Nov 5, 2017.

  1. Yazata Valued Senior Member

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    If you know what 'pseudoscience' is, then what is it? (Please don't just answer with a snarky one-liner. Actually use paragraphs and write something thoughtful.)

    Why is it (whatever 'it' is) "crap"? (Because you don't personally like it?)

    Do you have any reasons why other people should join you in not liking it?
     
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  3. sweetpea Registered Senior Member

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    Don't you know where origin is coming from?
    And I thought you were:
     
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  5. sweetpea Registered Senior Member

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    Do you hear that River?
     
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  7. origin Trump is the best argument against a democracy. Valued Senior Member

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    I was talking to Asexperia and we like to make up words and our own definitions to words, no need to add an old boring dictionary definition, thank you very much!
     
    Last edited: Nov 7, 2017
  8. origin Trump is the best argument against a democracy. Valued Senior Member

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    It is simply a belief masquerading as science.

    As an example someone can believe that the earth is 10,000 years old and the biblical flood occurred. That is not pseudoscience it is simply a belief.
    It becomes pseudoscience when science is incorrectly applied to support that belief. Like saying the Grand Canyon is evidence of the flood. Or the age of Niagara Falls is evidence that the earth is 10,000 years old.

    No it is crap because it is either a purposeful lie or an idea based on ignorance. Or simply crap.

    I think it is best to reject lies and conclusions based on ignorance. So yeah, I think all people should join in rejecting pseudoscience. You don't??
     
  9. Yazata Valued Senior Member

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    Presumably you mean 'non-scientific belief'. Science, after all, is a whole collection of beliefs.

    A speaker's belief in the truth of what he or she is saying can't plausibly disqualify what is said from the status of science. Science professors almost universally believe that what they teach is true.

    It couldn't be a lie if it expresses a proposition that the speaker believes is true. A lie involves knowingly stating an untruth. Lies shouldn't be smeared together with error.

    It may indeed reflect ignorance. But given that many of the most cherished scientific theories of the past were later rejected and replaced by very different theories, what justification do we have that we are any different today? A great deal of what is accepted as truth today might appear to future observers to be ignorance. Yet today it qualifies as science.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pessimistic_induction

    I don't believe in the truth of propositions that I believe are false. I most emphatically don't believe everything that people say.

    But while I don't believe in the literal truth of most of the things that are dismissed today as 'pseudoscience' (without anyone clarifying what 'science' is or how its very fuzzy boundaries are drawn), I do persist in thinking that 'pseudoscience' might occasionally have some value. As I argued above, I think that the history of science shows that astrology and alchemy did have value in the evolution of astronomy and chemistry. And I don't think that it's totally outlandish to think that other ostensible pseudosciences of today may be seen to have similar value when seen from the perspective of future history of science. Or maybe not. We really can't say at this point, since history is an unfolding process.
     
    Last edited: Nov 7, 2017
  10. origin Trump is the best argument against a democracy. Valued Senior Member

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    No, any belief.
    Purposely being obtuse, aren't we.
    I am drawing a distinction between unsupported belief as opposed to believing something based on evidence.
    Not if it is supported by evidence.
    I do not think so. I would say they universally believe what they teach is supported by evidence.
    Did you not notice that I separated lies from ignorance?
    This is not this hard.
    Our most cherished (whatever those are) theories were supported by evidence, hence they were science. They can be replaced by a theory that better explains a phenomena. Newtonian gravity and General Relativity come to mind
    Absolute truth is found in the arena of religion not science. If someone thinks that a certain theory is the truth they will probably be disappointed and are not expressing a scientific attitude.
    That is a reasonable attitude.
    I dismiss pseudoscience because it by definition is not supported by evidence. Simple. Pseudoscience is crap.
     
  11. Michael 345 Valued Senior Member

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    Pseudoscience is,to mangle Descartes, "I think therefore it is"

    Science is a process not a ingredient. It follows the lines of "I have observed and analysed and interpreted the data and think it might be expressed as ...... but I could be wrong and I am happy to be corrected if someone has more data or a better explanation"

    No they did not evolve. Astrology and alchemy are still around
    Astronomy totally split from astrology when, I'm going to walk on the wild side here, someone noticed they could get 6 different explanations from 6 different astrologers
    This can still be observed today if you follow Your Stars

    In an attempt to find out what was going on they made their own observations and concluded astrology was crap (oops) I meant not correct = to not science = to pseudoscience = to crap (we got there)

    I note in passing the study of UFOs along with the study of ghost have not evolved (or split) into science

    And to all those with religious beliefs who use the term " it's only a theory" as a put down it occurred to me that a belief in god can be put down in EXACTLY the same way

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    god created the Universe is only a theory (with the distinction of no-one doing any research - no follow up)

    So I conclude god created the Universe as pseudoscience of the first degree

    Breakfast and coffee time here

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  12. DaveC426913 Valued Senior Member

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  13. exchemist Valued Senior Member

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    Yes. For example, religion and some other metaphysical stances involve belief, but they are not pseudoscience, so long as they don't claim to be science.

    The defining characteristic of pseudoscience, surely, is an idea or system of ideas that claims to be science while lacking one or more of science's core elements. To put these at their simplest, the would be the creation of models of the physical world that are testable by means of objective observation of it.

    Pseudoscience may involve ideas that do not relate to the physical world, or ideas that cannot even in principle ever be tested, or subjective evidence and uncorroborated anecdote. But the key is that it has these inadmissible features while purporting to be science.

    Intelligent design is perhaps the classic example. Alchemy, astrology, kinesiology, reflexology all also qualify.

    I also take Yazata's point that most scientists do "believe" in their models to some degree. Strictly, we should treat them all with a degree of circumspection, in view of their provisional nature. The reality is that there are some we place so much confidence in that we effectively "believe" in them. But believing in them is as far as we can go, as we know they can never have the status of a proven fact.
     
    Last edited: Nov 8, 2017
    Michael 345 and origin like this.
  14. Gawdzilla Sama Registered Senior Member

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    Google can't find that one.
     
  15. river Valued Senior Member

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    Hmmm....what of Cosmic Plasma theory of the Universe ? Which has the evidence .

    And Halton Arp's theory of galaxies and the proof of his evidence ?

    My point is that , what is so called " pseudoscience " theories , can at times have the actual evidence to prove their theories . But are ignored .
     
  16. Gawdzilla Sama Registered Senior Member

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    Yeah, "plain and simple."
     
  17. river Valued Senior Member

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    Yeah , plain and simple .
     
  18. Gawdzilla Sama Registered Senior Member

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    Good, we agree. I hope you don't blush easily.
     
  19. river Valued Senior Member

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    The importance of pseudoscience thread(s) is to show that science is not about what is currently accepted as science , but what " science " has been missed . Not because it lacks the evidence but because scientists are as simple, complex and against change , as regular , common people are .
     
  20. Gawdzilla Sama Registered Senior Member

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    It's really great at getting people started down the wrong path.
     
  21. river Valued Senior Member

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    The wrong path is subjective .

    And is really great at exploring new thinking and new ideas .

    Which can lead to the greater understanding of all Nature .
     
    Last edited: Nov 22, 2017 at 4:20 AM
  22. paddoboy Valued Senior Member

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    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pseudoscience

    Pseudoscienceconsists of statements, beliefs, or practices that are claimed to be scientific and factual, in the absence of evidence gathered and constrained by appropriate scientific methods.[1][Note 1]Pseudoscience is often characterized by the following: contradictory, exaggerated or unfalsifiable claims; reliance on confirmation bias rather than rigorous attempts at refutation; lack of openness to evaluation by other experts; and absence of systematic practices when developing theories. The term pseudoscience is often considered pejorative[4] because it suggests something is being presented as science inaccurately or even deceptively. Those described as practicing or advocating pseudoscience often dispute the characterization.[2]

    The demarcation between science and pseudoscience has philosophical and scientific implications.[5] Differentiating science from pseudoscience has practical implications in the case of health care, expert testimony, environmental policies, and science education.[6]Distinguishing scientific facts and theories from pseudoscientific beliefs, such as those found in astrology, alchemy, medical quackery, occult beliefs, and creation science combined with scientific concepts, is part of science education and scientific literacy
    The word "pseudoscience" is derived from the Greek root pseudo meaning false
     
  23. Michael 345 Valued Senior Member

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    Pseudoscience makes crap look like a sophisticated discussion / debate

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